Chinese Graduate Student Expelled for Criticizing the University’s Pandemic Controls

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A graduate student of Ludong University in Shandong Province, China, was recently expelled after being administratively punished by the local police for holding a sign on campus opposing the campus lockdown and frequent mandatary COVID-19 nucleic acid testing of students. He also posted his opinion on social media,

A document, titled “Decision on Expulsion of Student Sun Jian,” has been circulating on Chinese social media that was signed by Ludong University on March 31. Sun was a graduate student majoring in Chinese history in the university. He has been posting on his WeChat account since December last year “untrue and inappropriate remarks” on national, Shandong, Yantai city, and the university’s pandemic prevention and control measures, which the document says was the reason for his expulsion.

Sun posted an “Open Letter to the Leaders of Ludong University” on his WeChat public account on December 24, 2021. In it, he said that he did not agree with all the anti-pandemic measures that take control of people’s lives, because the strict measures caused great inconvenience to the students’ lives. He also questioned “why can’t students be allowed to enter and leave the school freely when there is no outbreak in Yantai city,” and other large local agencies or enterprises have not restricted their employees in this way. He felt that he was not going to a university, but to the “Ludong Detention Center.”

Sun told the Chinese edition of The Epoch Times, “when I posted the open letter, the school immediately asked me to shut up and delete the letter.”

On March 27, Sun made a banner that said lift the lockdown of the university and that he’s against the frequent COVID-19 testing and other strict pandemic control measures, and he held up on campus in protest.

Sun said, “I don’t agree with some of the school’s epidemic measures, such as the frequent nucleic acid testing of all students. It has caused great distress to students.” He also pointed out the inequality in the process of epidemic prevention, “the school has made strict restrictions on the students’ movements, but it seems that there are no strict restrictions on teachers’ access to the campus.”

Sun said, “I think we need a public and reasonable explanation from the university. Some students complained that the measures are unreasonable, but the university would not let us speak out. I don’t think it’s right, and students should have their own rights.”

“I think it’s my freedom of speech to hold the sign and it’s not against the law, so I don’t think I did anything wrong,” Sun said.

After being expelled by the university, Sun consulted with lawyers about the possibility of revoking the university’s decision and was told it’s unlikely to happen.

He said, “I just want the school to apologize to me publicly [for expelling him].”

Sun is staying in Laishan, and said that Yantai police notified the Laishan police about him. “The police and the state security here in Laishan have paid attention to me,” he said.

Li Peng contributed to the report.

Alex Wu


Alex Wu is a U.S.-based writer for The Epoch Times focusing on Chinese society, Chinese culture, human rights, and international relations.

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